So, you’re considering a healthcare career as a medical assistant or phlebotomist. Your dream is to work in healthcare, but you’re not looking to (or can’t afford to) spend years in medical or nursing school. However, you’re confused and don’t know which of the two careers would be right for you.
Well, although the average salary for medical assistants and phlebotomists, and their work hours are similar, they have different roles. In this article, we’ll explore the differences between a medical assistant and a phlebotomist to help you decide on the healthcare career path to choose.
What To Know About Becoming A Medical Assistant
Medical assistants are healthcare professionals who perform the dual role of assisting doctors and nurses with basic clinical tasks, and carrying out administrative tasks. They are considered “the face of today’s health care team” due to their constant and direct contact with patients.
· Medical Assistant Education
It takes about a year to obtain a medical assistant certificate from an accredited university or college in the U.S. Some schools include phlebotomy training in their program to certify medical assistant graduates to take blood samples.
· Medical Assistant Duties
As a medical assistant, you’d spend time in direct patient care, assisting doctors and nurses. Some of the clinical tasks you’ll be assigned include taking patients’ vitals, administering medication, and changing wound dressing.
Medical assistant duties also include other tasks that don’t involve patient care directly. These include cleaning medical equipment, stocking medical supplies, setting up patients’ rooms, and filling out insurance forms.
· Medical Assistant Career Opportunities
Medical assistants are in-demand as they are valuable to all types of healthcare facilities, including doctors’ offices. In fact, experts project a 23% increase in the demand for medical assistants by 2028.
Furthermore, you can easily climb the career ladder into other healthcare roles. With your experience as a medical assistant, you can easily train further to become a surgical technician, therapy assistant or even a registered nurse.
What To Know About Becoming a Phlebotomist
Phlebotomists are healthcare workers specialized in drawing blood samples for diagnostic tests. They are “behind the scene” healthcare workers that contribute to patient care by helping in the diagnosis of their ailments.
· Phlebotomist Education
It takes about three months to complete a Phlebotomy Technician Certificate program in Atlanta colleges. This covers the 200 hours of training and clinical experience required by the National Phlebotomy Association.
· Phlebotomist Duties
As a phlebotomist, your primary role will be to draw blood from patients and take the samples to the laboratory for diagnostic testing. This may also involve other duties such as confirming the patient’s identity and printing the lab order. Some health facilities may expand the phlebotomist’s duties to include collecting urine samples and toxicology screens.
· Phlebotomist Career Opportunities
Phlebotomists can work either on location at a healthcare facility or on the road as mobile phlebotomists. With the latter choice, you’d visit patients at their homes or workplaces to collect samples for diagnostic tests. Furthermore, you may transition into other healthcare careers such as medical assistant and laboratory technologist.
Becoming either a medical assistant or a phlebotomist is an excellent start to a career in the healthcare industry. Whatever path you choose, you must work hard during and after your training to achieve your goals. And, if you need help finding a medical assistant job or phlebotomist job in Atlanta, you can find secret vacancies on our listing at RG Staffing.